As a competitive bodybuilder, I have to admit, I was quite skeptical to the point of suspicion, regarding how legit were AAS.
My main concern was regarding the substance used, while to a lesser degree, dosage.
Therefore, I mainly was focusing on pharmaceuticals, officially approved by the drug association of each country.
The use of injectable steroids in single ampoules is preferable, since it’s harder to be faked.
The construction cost of a single ampoule is way higher related to a bottle of 10ml.
As a result, a faked 10ml bottle would bring higher profits to the manufacturers.
Sterilization conditions are also safer, in disposable ampoules.
There are three main classes of AAS in the market:
1) the limited genuine and safe medicinal products, being authorized by the drug association of the particular country,
2) the underground (non-pharmaceutical) laboratories which replicate almost all substances that no longer exist in the global pharmaceutical market,
3) the counterfeits which are identical copies of original pharmaceuticals.
The problem with counterfeits & undergrounds is not just being under dosed relative to the labeled, but the possibility of containing a different substance.
For instance, nandrolone decaonate (Decadurabolin) is usually the faked steroid, instead of methenolone enanthate (Primobolan); or metandienone (Dianabol), instead of oxandrolone (Anavar).
From biochemical point of view, methenolone and oxandrolone don’t aromatise (DHT derivatives). Therefore, a legit Primobolan and Anavar shouldn’t increase serum beta estradiol levels (E2).
Reversely, methandienone aromatises remarkably.
On the other hand, nandrolone as a 19nor derivative has progestational activity and raise prolactine levels.
As a result, an allegedly testosterone, or Equipose that elevate serum prolactine are mostly faked by Decadurabolin; or even Equipose, instead of trenbolone.
We can conclude that, expensive substances are faked from cheaper ones.
Another issue that should be concerned is the presence of second class oils and heavy metals, which accumulate in the body.
There are specific criteria for notification and identification of false AAS, which have to do with specific evidence-marks on their paper and glass packaging.